How to Choose an LPN Program near Saraland Alabama
Now that you have decided on a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it’s important that you locate a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program near Saraland AL that will furnish the proper training. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, apart from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their responsibilities do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will cover in the next section. When initiating their search for LPN schools, many future nursing students begin with those that are the closest to their homes or that are the least costly. Although tuition and location are relevant considerations, they are not the only criteria that you should base your selection on. Other concerns, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important also. There are various other questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in an LPN program that we will talk about later in this article. But to start with, let’s take a look at the function of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
What is an LPN in Saraland AL?
Licensed Practical Nurses have numerous duties that they perform in the Saraland AL health care facilities where they are employed. As their titles signify, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Alabama. While they may be accountable for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves normally work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The healthcare facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can find patients seeking medical assistance is their domain. Every state not only oversees their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their day-to-day work functions may include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Providing medicines
- Initiating IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Assisting physicians or RNs with procedures
Along with their occupational duties being controlled by each state, the medical facilities or other Saraland AL healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Also, they can work in numerous specialties of nursing, for instance long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN Programs in Alabama
There are basically two scholastic credentials offered that provide education to become an LPN. The one that can be finished in the shortest period of time, generally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The next alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and typically require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with providing a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
LPN Programs Online
Attending LPN programs online is growing into a more in demand way to get instruction and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Saraland AL. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs require a certain number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient answer to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your work and household commitments have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online LPN training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
What to Ask LPN Programs
Once you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges near Saraland AL as well as within Alabama and throughout the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we already mentioned, the location of the school along with the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two points that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to see how your selection compares to the other programs.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the certificate program along with the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Besides helping confirm that you receive a quality education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited schools near Saraland AL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for LPNs are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an outstanding education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the LPN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, contact the Alabama school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some nearby Saraland AL healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the LPN schools you are considering what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to finish their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were displeased with the program and dropped out. It’s also essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a favorable reputation within the Saraland AL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Check if the schools have associations with local Saraland AL community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Considering LPN School in Saraland Alabama?
Saraland is a city in Mobile County, Alabama, United States, and a suburb of Mobile. As of the 2010 census, the population of the city is 13,405. It is a part of the Mobile metropolitan area. Saraland is the third largest city in Mobile County.
The land area that was to become the present-day Saraland, was included in a Spanish land grant to Don Diego Alvarez. Hence, descendants of Alvarez were the ones to give the community its first name: Alvarez Station. Later land squatters moved into the area and were able, legally, in 1800 to begin purchasing property. In 1807, a land office was opened in St. Stephens to handle all land transactions. Some of the pioneer families who seized the opportunity to buy up sections were named Alvarez, Rice, Hartley, Moore, LaCoste, Williams, Tool and Cleveland. Ultimately, Alvarez Station was called Cleveland Station. The present name of the city is reported to have been given by C.J. DeWitt, a retired minister editor who moved south in 1890 for health reasons. He opened the first post office on the Southern Railroad in 1895. The community is purported to be the namesake of his beloved wife, Sara.
Saraland was sparsely populated during the first part of the 20th century, until an industrial and population boom occurred in neighboring Mobile. Northward expansion of Mobile in the 1940s and 50s brought about the incorporation of Saraland in 1957. At the time of incorporation, the city reported only 125 residents. By the 1960 U.S. Census, annexations had swelled the population to 4,595. In 1980, census figures cited 9,844 Saraland residents. Current census records report that as of 2017, Saraland's population is estimated to have grown to 14,576.
The worst rail disaster in the history of Amtrak occurred near Saraland on Big Bayou Canot on September 22, 1993. At approximately 2:53 AM, Amtrak's Sunset Limited train, powered by three locomotives, and en route from Los Angeles, California to Miami, Florida with 220 passengers and crew aboard, crossed the Bayou Canot bridge at high speed and derailed at a kink in the track caused by a barge captain who rammed the bridge by making a wrong turn in the waterway, and failed to report the accident. Forty-seven people, of whom 42 were passengers, were killed, many by drowning, others by fire. Much of the rescue efforts were average citizens of the community who journeyed out in the early morning hours in small fishing boats to help at the scene.
Choose the Right LPN School near Saraland AL
Picking the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse program is perhaps the most crucial first step to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are a number of aspects that you need to take into account when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have emphasized in this article, it is important that you select an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Saraland AL.
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